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It’s been six years since an African-American head coach was hired via external search

Mike Tomlin AP

The NFL has acknowledged disappointment regarding the lack of diversity in this year’s round of coaching and G.M. hires.  There’s another trend that the league should regard as even more troubling.

As former Buccaneers and Colts coach Tony Dungy, now an analyst with NBC’s Football Night in America, has pointed out, it has been six years since an African-American head coach was hired as the result of an external search.

“Mike Singletary, Leslie Frazier and Romeo Crennel were named interim coaches when their bosses were fired during the season,” Dungy told PFT via email.  “They were retained as permanent head coaches.  Jim Caldwell, Raheem Morris and Hue Jackson were assistant coaches on staffs where there was a head-coaching opening and they were promoted from within.  However, you have to go back to 2007 when the Steelers hired Mike Tomlin to see a situation where a team hired an African-American coach from outside their organization to be their head coach.”
Tomlin was the Vikings’ defensive coordinator for one year before being selected by the Rooneys to replace Bill Cowher.  Overlooked for the job were Steelers offensive coordinator Ken Whisenhunt and Steelers offensive line coach Russ Grimm, both white.
“While many people would say it doesn’t matter and those six coaches were selected and got a chance, you still have to be concerned about the process for minority coaches,” Dungy said.  “I know Ron Rivera was hired by the Panthers, but you would have to think that somewhere in the last six hiring cycles a team would reach out to an African-American coach outside their building.  Unfortunately, it appears right now that the best way for an African-American coach to get an opportunity is to be on a staff where the head coach gets fired or retires.  I still don’t think owners and GMs are doing a great job in the process of identifying minority candidates.”
He’s right, and that’s where the process can best be changed.  From current coaches giving more meaningful opportunities to minority assistant coaches (such as play-calling duties on offense) to General Managers casting a wider net when interviewing candidates to teams being prevented from satisfying the Rooney Rule by interviewing a current member of the organization to the media doing a better job of highlighting qualified minority candidates, real changes are needed in order to improve the problem.
“I guess more than being upset by 2013 results I am more concerned about the trend,” Dungy added via text message.  “I don’t know if owners are really looking at minority candidates as a whole — unless they already know them.”
NFL teams should address this problem because it’s the right thing to do.  NFL teams will address this problem when they perceive a significant threat to their bottom line from public pressure or litigation.
Here’s hoping they choose to do the right thing before they have to.
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121 Responses to “It’s been six years since an African-American head coach was hired via external search”
  1. redfield11 says: Jan 18, 2013 2:31 PM

    The nfl is a what have you done for me lately league, general managers aren’t going to pass over a black candidate they think would be a phenomenal coach because he is black, even a racist GM would rather win a superbowl with a black coach then a losing season with a white coach. The only problem is what the media is making a problem.

  2. coltzfan166 says: Jan 18, 2013 2:36 PM

    This is a non-issue. Teams are going to hire the coach that they think gives them the best chance to win. It’s a confidence that most of them are white.

  3. mrplow3 says: Jan 18, 2013 2:38 PM

    “I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character”

    You do know that hiring someone because of the color of their skin is also what this dream is against?

  4. mymorningstory says: Jan 18, 2013 2:38 PM

    last year there was talk to drop the rooney rule because of the amount of minority head coaches.

    This year, there is talk of expanding it?
    come on

  5. thegreatgabbert says: Jan 18, 2013 2:39 PM

    Last coach hired from outside was Tomlin. G.M.s are now wary about making the same mistake.

  6. mikeheruki says: Jan 18, 2013 2:40 PM

    Maybe they aren’t any good.

  7. juliath83 says: Jan 18, 2013 2:40 PM

    Diversity is a sham idea. Coaching jobs should be based on merit, and there’s nothing that proves that blacks can’t coach. Lovie Smith, Dungy, Caldwell, Tomlin have all made Super Bowls. The ‘good ol boy network’ is really non-existent for teams that want to win because they hire the best coach, not the best ‘white coach that we happen to be friends with. ‘ Stop witch hunting for non-stories, please.

  8. kpow55 says: Jan 18, 2013 2:41 PM

    90% of owners would hire a purple cyclops if it knew how to win.

  9. thegreatgabbert says: Jan 18, 2013 2:41 PM

    It’s too easy just to blame Tomlin for the fact that no one hires black head coaches from outside the organization anymore.

  10. iamaltair says: Jan 18, 2013 2:41 PM

    Why is this a problem? Affirmative action is stupid, and so is the rooney rule. Teams should be able to interview who they feel are the best candidates for a vacant position and not have to subscribe to some silly ordinance stating they have to interview at least one minority. It isn’t fair to anybody involved, even minorities.

  11. rgb2425 says: Jan 18, 2013 2:42 PM

    Why are people acting like this is a crying shame? Look at the number of minority cadidates there are to choose from. There aren’t many legit coaches out there of minority status to choose from. What is the next step…forcing a team to hire a minority candidate? All the NFL wants to do is give off the perception like they are doing something good for our society. Then you have guys like Adam Schefter who act like they are extremely disappointed in this statistic. This should not be a concern if the goal is to find the best man for the job. That is what it comes down to, not the color of their skin or their nationality. Let’s all relax…this isn’t the 1950s anymore.

  12. Mr. Wright 212 says: Jan 18, 2013 2:42 PM

    Arians is the only one of these guys who have been hired who don’t have some serious red flags or lack of experience that the guys who have been deposed (Smith, Horton, etc.) don’t have.

  13. tjacks7 says: Jan 18, 2013 2:42 PM

    It’s 2013, who cares?

    Owners will hire the person who they think is best for the job because they’re in it to win, AKA make money.

  14. tomcse2000 says: Jan 18, 2013 2:42 PM

    Last I checked the NFL didn’t hire any hispanics or asian head coaches – clearly they must all be racist. Or maybe they are in the business of winning games and want the best coaches?

  15. coldharbours says: Jan 18, 2013 2:43 PM

    Hire on Merit not Color, Making an issue of this is going backwards is it not?

  16. cheddarski says: Jan 18, 2013 2:43 PM

    So now even when the coaches are hired from within it doesn’t really count? Bullhockey

  17. asusundevils says: Jan 18, 2013 2:43 PM

    So now it’s not enough to satisfy the Rooney Rule, you have to look externally? I’m sorry – I respect Tony Dungy but this is much ado about nothing. The Rooney Rule is the worst in professional sports. You hire the person who can put you in the best position to win, regardless of skin color.

  18. bucslose says: Jan 18, 2013 2:43 PM

    So instead of not hiring based on race, they WANT people to be hired based on race. As long as they’re not white.

    Politically correct nonsense

  19. ishallcomment says: Jan 18, 2013 2:43 PM

    Maybe there are not a lot of qualified African-American head coach candidates?

    Romeo? No.
    Lovie? No.
    Horton? Yeah, but He’s a defensive coach, owners want offense and jersey sales, and a person who directly interacts with their cash-cow QBs.

  20. bunjy96 says: Jan 18, 2013 2:44 PM

    This type of “threat” will never work in this country as long as we are a democracy. Don’t know about socialism though.

    There is no way my former boss would hire a minority because he was told he had to.

  21. Steeley McBeam says: Jan 18, 2013 2:44 PM

    @thegreatgabbert if your name has any connection with the team you root for youre on your 4th head coach since Tomlin was hired. Jags would kill for that guy.

  22. mavajo says: Jan 18, 2013 2:44 PM

    Sigh, you’re really beating this drum this week. Can we go back to Manti Te’o coverage instead?

  23. blackngold4life says: Jan 18, 2013 2:45 PM

    Show you can win 1st! and yes I’m black! or else we can expect the same thing every year..Taken bad jobs Ala Romeo wont help either. I’m not mad at the new hires I do believe Lovie should ne a HC right now, but Horton being a DC and Romeo’s HC record I already knew it wasent gona happen..it is what it is.

  24. ishallcomment says: Jan 18, 2013 2:45 PM

    NFLCA should sue for collusion because there are no Asian head coaches.

  25. steviethewiz says: Jan 18, 2013 2:45 PM

    Where are all the Asian coaches?

  26. RoofDude says: Jan 18, 2013 2:46 PM

    What’s wrong with, the best guy for the job regardless of ethnicity…?

  27. thehalotimonster says: Jan 18, 2013 2:46 PM

    This is a joke. They hire the best coach available for their team. Why should we force teams to waste time and money on a candidate that they won”t hire?

  28. sterilizecromartie says: Jan 18, 2013 2:46 PM

    So what, should owners start hiring minority coaches SOLELY because they are a minority? If minority candidates presented themselves well enough to get the jobs I am sure they would have gotten the jobs. The Rooney Rule is insulting enough… having coaches interview for jobs they have no chance at getting just so a box could be checked. Let’s not go any further.

  29. bucslose says: Jan 18, 2013 2:47 PM

    So what? The world doesn’t or shouldn’t revolve around skin color.

    So this is what we have to look forward to. Affirmative action in the NFL?!?!? What a joke.

    Sorry but everyone already has equal opportunity in this country. I know some want yo act like we’re still in the days of slavery but guess what? We’re not. We even have a black POTUS for Gods sake.

  30. purplegreenandgold says: Jan 18, 2013 2:47 PM

    As an african american I would suggest that the NFL follow their own Rooney rule during expansion when looking for new ownership

  31. pl4tinum514 says: Jan 18, 2013 2:48 PM

    Clearly, the un-hired minority coaches need to “get better” at coaching. That’s about all there is to say here, because if they were qualified, they’d have head coaching jobs.

  32. rekingcrew says: Jan 18, 2013 2:48 PM

    No one cares. Just win games.

  33. alphaq2 says: Jan 18, 2013 2:49 PM

    So let’s make it so that everyother coach a team hires has to be of a different ethnicity than the coach who preceded him. Very democratic, I’m sure that will go over really well!

  34. hrmlss says: Jan 18, 2013 2:49 PM

    The Rooney “Rule” has become an joke. I think it has become a hindrance for minority coaches actually. It seems some of them are turning down interviews because they feel they are being used as a “token” interview. Rather than interviewing all they can, polishing their presentation, getting input, and maybe just knocking some owner or GM’s socks off, they avoid an interview so they are not “used”.

  35. distracted9 says: Jan 18, 2013 2:49 PM

    Im sorry but it shouldnt matter what race a coach is. Im not going to put wins at risk to be politically correct. If the best canidate is white, black, asian, Indian, gay, hispainic, bi…. who cares? I think equal opourtunity should be just that.. equal.

  36. kcflake says: Jan 18, 2013 2:50 PM

    So????? As a Chiefs Fan, we had back to back African American head coached in Herm and Romeo.

  37. dgreenfi says: Jan 18, 2013 2:53 PM

    I blame Dennis Green.

  38. nananatman says: Jan 18, 2013 2:54 PM

    Having different skin color should not be a tangible trait for a skilled hire. Being black does not a good coach make or not make.

  39. hooahitsnotatomthing says: Jan 18, 2013 2:54 PM

    Also, look at the similarity of the “minority” coaches you mentioned. Mike Singletary, Leslie Frazier, Romeo Crennel and Raheem Morris are all defensive coaches trying to get a head coaching gig in a league with more and more emphasis on the offensive side of the ball. Look at Lovie Smith. With a 10-6 team, he got canned because his offense was garbage and he never made it a priority.

  40. trulywilde66 says: Jan 18, 2013 2:54 PM

    Mike Tomlin was only interviewed by the Steelers to satisfy the Rooney Rule.

    They had already assured Ken Whisenhunt he was their guy. But after interviewing Tomlin they changed their mind and hired him.

    The Rooney Rule worked.

    Minority candidates simply asked for the opportunity to be interviewed, knowing if they could just make their case some would be hired, and some were.

  41. ipeefreelyagain says: Jan 18, 2013 2:55 PM

    Again, shut up about this crap.

    Best candidates get jobs, period.

    Seriously, stop the media hype crap making whites out to be racist. It’s getting old. There was even a guy on TV saying the gun law opposition is due to whites in the south. Ridiculous

  42. jutts says: Jan 18, 2013 2:56 PM

    winning coaches win…. loosing coaches get fired.

  43. hifive123 says: Jan 18, 2013 2:59 PM

    I’d like to be all-or-nothing on this issue, but it really is complicated for me. When ever one side makes an argument I get defensive.

  44. youknowwhatsgoodforshoulderpain says: Jan 18, 2013 3:06 PM

    I could see someone being interested in seeking out Kevin Sumlin, but who’s to say he WANTS to come to the NFL. His college game is pretty strong. How many chances does Romeo Crennel have to get before somebody says “He’s a terrible HC”, because he IS!! I’d rather someone give Dennis Green another whack in the NFL, at least he has a winning record as a HC.

  45. shlort says: Jan 18, 2013 3:08 PM

    Never really put a lot of thought into the color of the skin of the coaches. Thanks, Tony Dungy, for bringing race back to the forefront of the NFL. What a joke.

    So, it isnt good enough that these guys were considered the best candidate, on an interim basis, that they were eventually given the HC job outright? Is Dungy trying to tell us that any vacant HC positions should be filled with African American Head Coaches? What is his point really?

    How about the owner picks who he believes gives his team the best chance to win, regardless of skin color?

    I hate racism. It has gone from having to be white to be a racists, to having to be other than white to be a racist. When did that happen? Discrimination is wrong regardless of the victims color. What Dungy apparently believes is that it is ok to discriminate, so long as the guy being discriminated against is white.

  46. gooboy6 says: Jan 18, 2013 3:09 PM

    All these Owners want is to win. If the best candidate is black , he’ll get the job. My 7 yr old boy asked me ” daddy why are all the basketball players black ?”
    I told him ” because they are better than the white players”
    Rest my case

  47. bucslose says: Jan 18, 2013 3:10 PM

    I’m glad it appears most people are against this. Sadly, this happens far too often in the real world. Affirmative action is pushed for college entrance and hiring. I’ve even seem up for bid contracts where I work, where companies were rewarded by the government for choosing a company owned by a minority, had x amount of minorities, etc etc.

  48. filthymcnasty1 says: Jan 18, 2013 3:10 PM

    Why no outrage over the lack of Asian head coaches?

  49. katejake says: Jan 18, 2013 3:11 PM

    The Rooney rule is just plain stupid. If I was a black man I would be more upset that the only reason a team talks to me is because of the color of my skin. I think their have been guys that got their hopes up for being a head coach only to find out they were only brought in because of this dumb rule.

  50. dalucks says: Jan 18, 2013 3:12 PM

    David Shaw of Stanford will be the next black head coach in the NFL and he will be great. Hopefully, he and Pep Hamilton will be the coaches of the Houston Texans soon because Gary Kubiak has maxed out his time in Houston.
    Ray Horton will be a great head coach if given the oppurtunity. Lovie Smith will be in high demand soon.

  51. echoplex89 says: Jan 18, 2013 3:16 PM

    Lovie Smith: 9 seasons 2004-12
    Dungy: 13 seasons 1996-01,02-08
    Marvin Lewis: 10 seasons 2003-12.
    Mike Tomlin: 6 seasons 2007-12
    Dennis Green: 14 seasons 1992-01, 2004-06.

  52. slickster35 says: Jan 18, 2013 3:19 PM

    Herm Edwards set back the process a hundred years.

    Yeah, he’s just that stupid. And unqualified.

  53. southpaw79 says: Jan 18, 2013 3:19 PM

    It is nice to know that my Daughter will not have an equal opportunity to get a job because she does not fit the PC race of the month, oh wait, how many Female head coaches are there? My Daughter is only 5, but why did she not get an interview for a head coaching job?

  54. ijahru says: Jan 18, 2013 3:20 PM

    trulywilde66 says:
    Jan 18, 2013 2:54 PM
    Mike Tomlin was only interviewed by the Steelers to satisfy the Rooney Rule.

    They had already assured Ken Whisenhunt he was their guy. But after interviewing Tomlin they changed their mind and hired him.

    The Rooney Rule worked.

    Minority candidates simply asked for the opportunity to be interviewed, knowing if they could just make their case some would be hired, and some were.

    Proof please

  55. deebo92 says: Jan 18, 2013 3:20 PM

    I truly believe Ray Horton would make a fantastic head coach.

  56. dadawg77 says: Jan 18, 2013 3:21 PM

    The real problem is the best minority coaches are on defensive side, with teams looking at the offensive side more and more. Thus to solve the lack of minority head coaches you need to solve the lack of minority offensive coordinators, Caldwell and…. Which may be a product of the system pushing blacks away from the QB position as recently as ten years ago. As player who came of age then, would be of age as head coaches and coordinators now.

  57. kisstherings says: Jan 18, 2013 3:22 PM

    It’s obsurd we are waisting time even talking about this during Conference Championship week.

    Each team hires who they believe are the best coaches for their team. SKIN COLOR should have nothing to do with why a team doesn’t hire someone and nothing to do with why a team DOES hire them.

    Stop even talking about it. It’s like saying there hasn’t been a coach hired over the last six years with Red Hair. Get over it.

  58. normdogg says: Jan 18, 2013 3:22 PM

    “….the media doing a better job of highlighting qualified minority candidates, real changes are needed in order to improve the problem.”

    Yeah, the media did a great job this year highlighting Ray Horton. Which got him totally used by every team looking for a token Rooney interview.

    This is not a problem in the NFL, and the moment that the man who is most qualified for the job being chosen becomes a “problem,” I’m done with the NFL.

    Go ahead and delete this post too because you don’t like what it says.

  59. dat504 says: Jan 18, 2013 3:24 PM

    Most of you guys are living in another world. So Andy Reid got another job in 4 days because he’s a great coach? You should feel good to be so given a leg up

  60. justwinbaby29 says: Jan 18, 2013 3:25 PM

    If this was 1975 or 1980 I could see the concern. The only color that matters now is green. And you only get the green by winning. Nobody is not going hire a coach because they’re black.

    On the other hand if you start passing over white coaches for black coaches – to match a quota – despite the fact the white coach is better qualified, now you have a big problem.

  61. pookeye says: Jan 18, 2013 3:25 PM

    come on guys, there are only 32 teams out there…. and i agree with Filthymcnasty1, what about the asian head coaches? and why does Ron Rivera not count as a minority head coach that was hired recently, why do we have to emphasize the “Black” coach?!?!?!

  62. openseason51 says: Jan 18, 2013 3:27 PM

    What a bunch of cry babies. If Tony Dungaree wants to cry about that then instead of bitching and moaning about it, help the owners see the potential within the Black community of coaches. There are few Black mentors that really care and that is the REAL problem.

  63. electricvibe says: Jan 18, 2013 3:31 PM

    This is an issue. Why do black coaches have to be perfect? Why do they have to be a “sure thing”? before getting hired? Is Chip Kelly, Marrone, That Chicago coach perfect or a sure thing? NO!!! So why do black coaches can’t have any flaws to them?? Black coaches have to be GREAT, while white coaches can be average and get another job in days.

    No way Andy Reid should have gotten a job 4 days after he was fired. Losing 12 games out of 13. Let that happen to a black coach and he would be out of the NFL.

    Lovie Smith won 10 games and can’t find a job.

  64. thetooloftools says: Jan 18, 2013 3:48 PM

    Well, a foreigner bought the Jacksonville team and a redneck bought the Browns so that is progress.

  65. phelbin says: Jan 18, 2013 3:49 PM

    Getting a first time HC job is really tough…for anyone. If Tony Dungy wanted a job he’d have one immediately. And it seemed like Jay Gruden interviewed with a dozen teams, and he didn’t get hired. Maybe we should be talking about the discrimination against first time head coaches. Cause that explains this statistic a lot better than race.

  66. nimbushex says: Jan 18, 2013 3:52 PM

    “Mike Tomlin was only interviewed by the Steelers to satisfy the Rooney Rule.

    They had already assured Ken Whisenhunt he was their guy. But after interviewing Tomlin they changed their mind and hired him.

    The Rooney Rule worked.

    Minority candidates simply asked for the opportunity to be interviewed, knowing if they could just make their case some would be hired, and some were.”

    ————————————

    This is 100% wrong, Steelers already had satisfied the Rooney rule by interviewing Ron Rivera, it had nothing to do with them bringing in Tomlin for an interview. Also, I can’t believe a few people have tried to make the case that Tomlin is the reason black coaches from outside organizations haven’t gotten interviewed/hired, are you people on drugs? I couldn’t be more happy with Tomlin as a coach.

  67. bearasstruth says: Jan 18, 2013 3:52 PM

    Jery Jones is quietly setting up the hire of Love Smith in Dallas. They are hiring some of the Lovie team as we speak and bring in an OC that is recommend. Can’t anyone else see this is happening behind the scence. Lovie is the perfect puppet head coach that Jerry would hire either this season or next.

  68. tedstheman says: Jan 18, 2013 3:54 PM

    Ron Rivera was a minority hired from outside. Doesn’t that count because he is Hispanic? What a joke! As for the comment above, if Lovie had an offense he wouldn’t have been fired. 9 years and 4 offensive coordianators. That was reason enough to be fired

  69. dankil13 says: Jan 18, 2013 4:06 PM

    Andy Reid was hired in 4 days because he demonstrated the ability to go in to an organization that is poorly organized and turn it around rather quickly. Did his message get stale after 14 years – absolutely. But the Eagles were a mess when he got here (thanks to Kotite and Ray Rhodes), and he made them a periennal playoff contender very quickly.

    In regards to the lack of minority coaches, how many minority coordinators are there? Very few. I believe none of which are even on the offensive side of the ball. How many minority coaches are there in College? Again very few. There is such a lack of qualified candidates to pull from that maybe the league should look at ways of getting these guys better coaching experience so that they are in the position to become a head coach when the time is right – instead of trying to force these guys into roles they are not ready for at this stage in the career.

  70. philahitman says: Jan 18, 2013 4:08 PM

    Hard to believe noone wanted to hire Romeo Crennel. Must be because hes black and NOT his AWFUL record as a head coach. <sarcasm

  71. phillyfan75 says: Jan 18, 2013 4:11 PM

    The NFL is an offensive league. Look at the coaching hires. All but one were offensive guys. To get more African-American NFL head coaches, you need more African-American offensive coordinators.

    Pep Hamilton has been hired as the Colts’ offensive coordinator. He’ll be on a short list soon.

    The NFL is also willing to look look at top performing college head coaches. So more top performing college head coaches would help.

    David Shaw at Stanford will be a future head coach in the NFL. Kevin Sumlin, Charlie Strong, and Darrell Hazell are building their resumes and may drawn NFL interest.

    If the supply is there, the NFL will hire them. They is developing the supply further down the pipeline.

  72. georgerm85 says: Jan 18, 2013 4:15 PM

    Art Shell, anyone? That was external…

  73. ravenseattheirownpoop says: Jan 18, 2013 4:20 PM

    Hey greatgabbert, when you say things like that, you show your ignorance. The Steelers were smart enough to hire Tomlin even though everyone knew Wiesenhunt was getting the job.
    It’s a credit to Rooney to go into the interview process with an open mind. Tomlin blew them away in the interview and they hired him.
    Since then, all he has done is take them to the playoffs 4 out of 6 years. Superbowl twice, and won a Lombardi!
    Yeah, they were real stupid to hire him.
    Not to mention the utter failure of Wiz in Arizona.

  74. azarkhan says: Jan 18, 2013 4:28 PM

    I’m absolutely heartbroken.

  75. jimbroney says: Jan 18, 2013 4:44 PM

    Yea but February is right around the corner!!!!

  76. wethog66 says: Jan 18, 2013 5:06 PM

    A bunch of white recycle NFL head coaches get recycled during an offseason and worthy black assistant coaches weren’t fairly considered. A bunch of why first time NFL HC’s get hired and recycled black HC’s (like Lovie Smith) weren’t fairly considered. The Rooney Rule Fan Club (RRFC) have all their bases covered.

    Also, Ron Rivera fits the description of a minority HC and I’m pretty sure he was hired “externally” within the last 6 years.

  77. masterblaster78 says: Jan 18, 2013 5:09 PM

    Hire the person that’s best suited for the job. I don’t care if he’s purple. Why hire someone because of their color whereas someone else is a better coach. The idea is to win games, not win the affections of the fans or the NAACP. It’s a business. Why do they have to be black? What happened to the other major minority the Latinos? Come’on people, there are more minorities than blacks here. Where are the Asians? Check out who Al Davis hired. He broke the barrier.

  78. thejuddstir says: Jan 18, 2013 5:12 PM

    How would you like to own a billion dollar company and have someone tell you who you had to interview to run the company? Asinine Rooney Rule. Owners want to win and they are going to hire whomever they think gives them the best chance to win……just as you and I would do, and that includes you Mr. Florio. People who worry so freakin much about doing what is politically correct are ruining this damn country.

  79. jtylert says: Jan 18, 2013 5:13 PM

    Diversity for diversity’s sake is such a backwards and racist concept.

    We should be celebrating the hiring of coaches based on the content of their playbook rather than focusing on the lack of hiring based on the color of their skin (the lack of which is a good thing).

  80. psilenttype says: Jan 18, 2013 5:19 PM

    It is a problem point blank! If majority of players in the league are black then why aren’t the management reflective of that! Doesn’t mean that majority of coaches need too be black but more then it is presently. More then enough idviduals qualified! Rooney rule was in place to have black coaches get a chance to be HC or put in a position of training to become one! NCAA is a bigger problem also so if NCAA can get there act together then it would make it easier for NFL to find college talent too

  81. billsboy88 says: Jan 18, 2013 5:25 PM

    So, all we gotta do is find one team to hire a wheelchair-bound black lesbian teenager as it’s OC and we’ll have all our bases covered, right?

    Maybe that would make the politically correct crowd happy.

  82. mwm367 says: Jan 18, 2013 5:28 PM

    The NFL is made up of a majority of black players. Shouldn’t we have a rule that makes every team have a certain amount of white players? Take your rooney rule and shove it up your ass.

  83. packerhater says: Jan 18, 2013 5:32 PM

    Why worried over just black coaches , why not Japanese or Chinese or Indian or woman or Mexican coaches? Also I dont think there is a single Afraican American coach as I dont think any of the coaches were born in Africa and then moved to America . What about a white African American coach?

  84. historygeek6 says: Jan 18, 2013 5:41 PM

    These comments are astounding in their collective ignorance. It’s like listening to the people of middle-ages Europe violently respond to Galileo’s theory that the Sun does not in fact revolve around the Earth. In thirty or so years, whites will no longer be the majority in this country. At this very moment, whites only make up about eight percent of the world’s total population. The world didn’t end when the Earth ceased to be the “center of the universe”. And it probably also won’t end when whites cease to be the “center of the universe” as well!

  85. blackqbwhiterb says: Jan 18, 2013 5:46 PM

    All this is saying is, Dungy and those who think he’s right feel that owners are, as a group, racist….. When will Dungy and all the others who feel that way accept the premise that success drives promotion, & winning is all the owners care about? Does it take a certain number, like 10 black coaches? Does it take 50% of coaches? When is there enough black coaches to satisfy black people that owners aren’t steering away from them out of racism? Someone please tell me when you’ll believe white owners just wanna win? Please educate me, what does it take to convince you that white owners care about winning, not race? What’s the quota, or whatever?

  86. bolts0621 says: Jan 18, 2013 5:49 PM

    Is there anyone (ANYONE) who believes that teams are NOT hiring the best candidate – but instead focused on the best white candidate?

    This is a niche sector – i’m amazed the media is constantly talking about this….if i were a minority – i would be more upset about being subject to “token” quota based interviews….

  87. obamareallysucks says: Jan 18, 2013 5:52 PM

    psilenttype says: Jan 18, 2013 5:19 PM

    It is a problem point blank! If majority of players in the league are black then why aren’t the management reflective of that! Doesn’t mean that majority of coaches need too be black but more then it is presently. More then enough idviduals qualified! Rooney rule was in place to have black coaches get a chance to be HC or put in a position of training to become one! NCAA is a bigger problem also so if NCAA can get there act together then it would make it easier for NFL to find college talent too

    Maybe we need more white players, as they are underrepresented.

  88. rukkus1 says: Jan 18, 2013 6:00 PM

    Aside from this last season, andy reid has had a fairly good record, and post season success. To imply he stunk and still got hired over a black coach is a shot in the dark.

  89. clayformvp says: Jan 18, 2013 6:04 PM

    Just because a certain election was won based solely on race, doesn’t mean every important job should be filled based on the color of your skin.

  90. mackcarrington says: Jan 18, 2013 6:12 PM

    You can count the number of minority coaches on one hand. Isn’t that enough?? Minorities already have all of the good running back and defensive back jobs. And the Rooney Rule is preventing a qualified white coach from getting a head coaching job.

  91. coachbeck says: Jan 18, 2013 6:16 PM

    It’s all ridiculous. It’s been proven time and time again that affirmative action has been counter productive. In the older generations maybe but not now. Turn the page man.

  92. Deb says: Jan 18, 2013 6:16 PM

    trulywilde66 says:

    Mike Tomlin was only interviewed by the Steelers to satisfy the Rooney Rule.

    They had already assured Ken Whisenhunt he was their guy. But after interviewing Tomlin they changed their mind and hired him.

    The Rooney Rule worked.

    Minority candidates simply asked for the opportunity to be interviewed, knowing if they could just make their case some would be hired, and some were.
    ————————————————–
    The Steelers never assured Whis he was their guy. Rumor had it they told Cowher’s offensive line coach Russ Grimm he was their guy. But Tomlin was much more in line with the Steelers’ previous two hires Noll and Cowher. He was a young defensive coach–exactly what we needed. I wouldn’t trade him for anyone.

  93. bobbyhoying says: Jan 18, 2013 6:16 PM

    It sickens me when supposedly “enlightened” liberals evaluate anyone’s suitability for anything based upon skin color. Are the fans up in arms over getting “stuck” with a black mobile QB? Are fans clamoring for more slow, light skin guys to be QB’s? When will you liberals accept people as they are?

  94. generaldread954 says: Jan 18, 2013 6:20 PM

    It is a problem point blank

  95. iggles07 says: Jan 18, 2013 6:22 PM

    Has there EVER been an asian head coach in the NFL? Or a female head coach? Or a hispanic head coach?

    You know in just 4 short years it will have been 8 years since we had a white President too…

  96. NotoriousKDV says: Jan 18, 2013 6:25 PM

    With the way the league is going, with QB’s being more important than ever, it looks like teams want offensive coordinators that can get the most out of their QB’s. So you’re going to see a lot of QB coaches becoming OC’s. And obviously a lot of OC’s are getting HC opportunities now compared to DC’s.

    So the way I see it is, if minorities want more HC opportunities then the best route seems to be becoming a QB coach then an OC. So the focus I think should be on how do more minorities get opportunities to be QB coaches because honestly, I don’t even know a single QB coach that’s a minority. Then once that issue is addressed, they need to figure out how to get more minorities opportunities as OC’s.

    The problem now is that people are focussed on HC jobs and the lack of minorities getting serious consideration for HC positions when the real issue is down the ladder with the lack of minority QB coaches and minority OC’s. At least that’s the way that I see it.

    Again, the league is trending heavily toward the offense but a lot of the top minority candidates are on the defensive side and teams just don’t seem to want to hire defensive guys as HC’s. So if we want to see a larger, more qualified pool of minority candidates then I think the league needs to figure out how to get more minority QB coaches and more minority OC’s.

  97. JSpicoli says: Jan 18, 2013 6:29 PM

    The Rooney rule is part of the problem.

  98. freedomispopular says: Jan 18, 2013 6:30 PM

    We need more diversity amongst runningbacks. Besides Peyton Hillis or Mike Alstott, how many white runningbacks can you think of? Now that’s a real shame right there.

  99. gizzmonic says: Jan 18, 2013 6:37 PM

    no issue here. Only 32 teams. with only 25% turnover. This belongs back in the 1970′s

  100. generaldread954 says: Jan 18, 2013 6:38 PM

    Only two coach go to the super bowl i don’t see 30 coaches loosing there jobs, Andy Reed won 11 games in 2 years Love Smith won 20 games in 2 years.. Andy had a job in two days. Y is that a black Coach must always Prove them selves before they are considered.. to me Arias From the Colt is the only NFL proven coach that has done anything, for this so called what has you done for me lately league that has been hired out of the 8 coaches…

  101. dcapettini says: Jan 18, 2013 6:48 PM

    When was the last time an NFL team hired a white cornerback? As far as I know there is not a single white corner in the league. If the answer is that black cornerbacks are better than white CBs I will agree as long as we don’t have to listen to Tony Dungy whining about the number of black HCs.
    As long as we are on the subject, why are the overwhelming number of players in the NBA black? You almost have to be European for a white man to get a job in the NBA.
    And just to top it off, why are “Historically Black Universities” over 90% black when “Diversity” is so important to non-HBUs?

  102. uglytrog says: Jan 18, 2013 6:51 PM

    But wait… over 50% of the Players in the league are Black while they only make up 20% of the population. If a lack of Black Coaches in the NFL is going to be an issue, shouldn’t the lack of White Players be a bigger issue? Maybe a Rooney 2.0 rule should be passed that say the NFL teams must invite 60% White players to training camps.

  103. sactogary says: Jan 18, 2013 6:54 PM

    What can be done about the racial inequity in the NFL at wide receiver?

  104. jimthebuilder27 says: Jan 18, 2013 7:05 PM

    Affirmative action is a racist policy at colleges, and now the NFL is following suit. What happened to the merits system?

    So now the NFL wants it to be “Best person for the job, but also has to be black?” Can’t have it both ways guys!

  105. Nofoolnodrool says: Jan 18, 2013 7:09 PM

    Oh tony I thought you were special, but no you are prejudiced like every person on earth. Everyone s comfortable with people that look like them… The real people with a grasp of equality are the Rooneys who hired Tomlin over two qualified white candidates . I love mike Tomlin as a coach as do most people in Pittsburgh. Tomlin earned it because he was the best candidate and has been great, but to say you have to hire 12% black head coaches because blacks are that percentof the population is stupid. Do we have to have 12% of the chefs in Chinese restaurants black? The excuses have to end sometime..earn it!

  106. katolungile says: Jan 18, 2013 8:54 PM

    Every time I see a white WR, they say he’s a “possession receiver, w/ good hands.” Why can’t they just be good receivers…

  107. randallflagg52 says: Jan 18, 2013 9:03 PM

    Teams should be required to have at least one white corner back on their active roster. I’m tired of seeing my people being oppressed and not have the opportunity to be successful corner backs!

  108. charger383 says: Jan 18, 2013 9:13 PM

    Rooney rule is just another reason to hate the Steelers

  109. tnbaer says: Jan 18, 2013 10:00 PM

    Could the real issue not be an unwillingness to hire African-American coaches but the lack of qualified African-Americans in the pipeline? Head Coaches usually get pulled from Defensive or Offensive Coordinator positions and when you look around the league most of those coaches are white. I’m not suggesting a problem doesn’t exist (or that it does) but perhaps it starts further down the totem pole than at the Head Coach and GM hires. Does it start at the Secondary Coach position or Offensive Line Coach position? The questions are: “How are African Americans entering into coaching positions?” and “Are they moved up the chain at the same rate as whites?” Quite simply, if an owner has a limited choice among a pool of candidates, that most candidates are white, it’s no surprise they choose someone who is white.

  110. arcee510 says: Jan 19, 2013 12:00 AM

    If it was a normal job I would see it as a place hiring and all the resumes doesn’t contain one from a minority. Now it can all be just by chance but from the outside looking in, it just looks bad. It’s nothing wrong with looking in a place that you’ve never looked before. That’s what I think the whole idea is. Just my opinion tho

  111. derekeffingnrtn says: Jan 19, 2013 12:14 AM

    I’m acknowledging my disappointment that only one coach with a defensive background was hired. I still don’t think owners and GMs are doing a great job in the process of identifying defense-minded candidates.

    That’s where the process can best be changed. From current coaches giving more meaningful opportunities to defensive assistant coaches (such as play-calling duties on offense) to General Managers casting a wider net when interviewing candidates to teams being prevented from satisfying their thirst for offense by interviewing offense-minded coaches to the media doing a better job of highlighting qualified defense-minded candidates, real changes are needed in order to improve the problem.

    Here’s hoping they choose to do the right thing before they have to.

  112. shaunypoo says: Jan 19, 2013 1:20 AM

    The greatest form of inequality is to try to make unequal things equal.
    - Aristotle

    If they are qualified, they would be hired, if they are not qualified, they won’t be hired.

  113. eatlessveggies says: Jan 19, 2013 7:21 AM

    I would be absolutely insulted if I was called for an interview solely because of the Rooney rule. Especially if a team already knows they will hire someone else.

  114. dtuffgong says: Jan 19, 2013 1:52 PM

    ishallcomment says: Jan 18, 2013 2:43 PM

    Maybe there are not a lot of qualified African-American head coach candidates?

    Romeo? No.
    Lovie? No.
    ______________________________

    You must be insane. Lovie is not qualified to be a head coach?? But John Fox is? Jeff Fisher is? Andy Reid is? What nonsense.

  115. ray1950 says: Jan 19, 2013 2:05 PM

    If somebody puts up the ridiculous amount of money necessary to purchase an NFL team, it seems to me they can hire anyone they want.

  116. jamson64 says: Jan 19, 2013 6:12 PM

    When was the last time a Mike Tomlin team won the division?

  117. bobzilla1001 says: Jan 20, 2013 12:02 PM

    Deb is right. Russ Grimm was nearly hired before Tomlin.
    As far as not trading him for anybody: Too funny. A typical statement by a blinded fan who sees no evil, speaks no evil and is happy watching their team lose to the Raiders, Titans, Chargers and Browns (twice in the past four years)…
    I’d gladly take a Harbaugh in a heartbeat. And yes, I am a lifelong objective Steelers observer.

  118. kev86 says: Jan 20, 2013 12:42 PM

    I love having Jerry Reese as GM and could care less if he was blue, green, black, white or purple. Go Giants!

  119. Deb says: Jan 20, 2013 1:50 PM

    @bobzilla …

    Saying I wouldn’t trade him for anybody was a bit hyperbolic in Tomlin’s case. On the college side, I truly wouldn’t trade Saban for anyone in college coaching today–for obvious reasons. But it’s true that I wouldn’t trade Tomlin for either of the Harbaughs because I don’t like the way they operate on a personal level, although I like the system Jim runs. Would I trade Tomlin for Belichick? Yeah, if Belichick were younger. I’m a Parcells fan and like most of the coaches from that tree, though Belichick is the best.

    I was raised on Bear Bryant and lean toward coaches who come from the defensive side of the ball and play smashmouth. Tomlin’s got that personality, and Haley runs that offense. Yes, I see some issues. But with two Super Bowl appearances since Tomlin’s arrival, I’m more inclined than you to view our glass as half full.

  120. benkotter says: Dec 10, 2013 1:35 AM

    And to compare the dearth of white receivers, rbs and cbs with the lack of black HCs is ludicrous. White offensive lineman and Qbs get paid just fine compared to the other positions on the field. The bigger gripe might be why are their so few white professional athletes comparatively speaking? Simple: Blacks see sports as a way out because the criteria for admission is objective whereas the criteria for other professions is more subjective thus increasing the chance blacks will be discriminated against. Therefore blacks flock to sports knowing that they dont have to “fit in”. They simply have to be good at what they do.

  121. dcapettini says: Dec 10, 2013 11:56 AM

    And their motivation is so high that not one single White cornerback, out of over 130, probably more like 200 once you add in the guys who take over for the injured and cut players, is “motivated” enough to work at obtaining this million dollar plus position? Come on now! Get serious! For some reason which we apparently don’t want to admit, Blacks have some genetic advantage over White when it comes to the skills necessary to play this position. To maintain that Blacks and Whites are 100% equal in all skills and capacities is ludicrous. As for discrimination, go to to DC and check out who has government jobs. It sure doesn’t look like Blacks are discriminated against there. Some Blacks, like you apparently, just can’t give up the poor victim role.

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